February 2007 Archives

Don't use SAV!!

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Today promised to be another fun day of removing viruses from machines. Except that at 4:30am, someone sent a malformed email to our mail server which crashed it. So I restarted it (when I heard the pager at 5:50am). Only to have it crash again a few minutes later. Lots of memory dumping type things happening on the screen. And what appeared to be a spam. Restarted. Crash. Repeat several times. At some point the email must have either gotten through or bounced, because the last time it crashed was 9:03am. But I had to sit and watch the thing most of the morning in case it crashed again. So that was fun.

Now we'd logged a call to IBM because the server was clearly having issues. They didn't have much to offer except upping the logging. Then late this afternoon they said "oh, yeah, there's been a stack of calls logged in the States as well, we're looking into it". Yay.

After lunch I thought it might be safe to leave the server and go and do some antivirus stuff. Except I failed abysmally. This one machine simply would not upgrade SAV, or even remove the previous (vulnerable) version. So I'm here to say right now, never use Symantec Antivirus!! It has to be the crappiest software I've ever had to deal with. Refusing to uninstall. Refusing to upgrade. Hanging on stopping services. Poor pickup of new viruses in the wild. Not to mention listening on ports to the outside world, and being buggy and vulnerable to buffer overruns!! The number of hours wasted simply *waiting* for it to do something and waiting for reboots.. we could have bought an entire new anti-virus system!! This virus has been doing the rounds for two and half days, and it took until this afternoon before its definitions recognised the system.exe file as a virus. Even worse is these machines are now riddled with spyware that SAV won't remove, even when it says it has removed the various trojans and spyware (or will after reboot).

If I ever had to make a decision on what anti-virus software to run, it would NOT be Symantec Antivirus.

SAV Sux

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Spent the entire day attempting to remove viruses and upgrade SAV on people's computers. Only to have the updated scanners pick up even more spyware nonsense lurking around. Tomorrow is going to be no better I can tell...

SAV Nonsense

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So this worm went round today. And hit all the computers that hadn't been updated to the latest and greatest version of SAV. So about 5% of our computers. Most annoying. And NO communication whatsoever from the Service Desk about what it might be, who else had been affected.. nothing! Just had to muddle our own way through it. Then tonight they finally sent round a link to the latest patch. Except it doesn't work unless you have a least the 10.1.5 baseline install. Which isn't vulnerable it seems. Yay. Thanks guys.

So anyway, that actually was a bit of fun in what otherwise would have been rather a boring day. That and playing removalist this morning trying to get a lab setup.

YouTube

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The other day CC asked if I'd post her the movie of the Queens singing. Well after I'd downloaded and listened to the movies again I realised I didn't really have a good one of the two of them honking together. But I did have a nice one of the Queen Mary 2 honking away merrily. So I finally signed up for a YouTube account tonight and uploaded my first ever video ...

Quiet

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Had a quiet day today, not doing either of the things we had planned. Instead we watched Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and some Star Trek, went shopping for a dinner set (didn't find any we liked), drank tea and ate some yummy food (including some Krispy Kreme's D&Y brought over last night and leftover potato bake).

Miss the boy :(

Well he does :)
He replaced a bunch of taps tonight. Had problems with a few of them so couldn't replace those. Oh well. But the general situation is much more betterer than it was :)

Did some roasted lamb shanks for D&Y for dinner, which was yummy, I thought.

The rest of the day was pretty quiet. Was going to go to the beach this morning but we'd both had bad nights sleeps, and Stu was feeling ill from all the refined flour he ate last night, so we just stayed in. Had a dip in the pool which was very refreshing. Then had a siesta cause we were both so wasted. Went for a little walk to the dive shop and got a snorkel and goggles to replace my ancient cheapie ones.

So generally quite a nice day :) But I'm thoroughly exhausted and can't wait to collapse into bed.

Full

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ok so dinner was 3-4 hours ago but I still feel full.

J&G took us out for dinner courtesy of Uncle Bill. Had a lovely chicken lombardi. 2/3 of the emergency services were also there. And a bunch of Italian men that reminded me of Goodfellas which I just happened to watch last night.

heh

Job Application

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So I spent the whole night tonight working on a job application. This is a big shock to the system. I haven't had to write a job application in probably eight years. And my resume hadn't been updated in seven. Most of the skills listed were completely out of date. Like NetBeui!! heheh.

I don't think it's all that good. It was very rushed (it's due tomorrow). Oh well, will have more time for the next one...

Queens of the Harbour

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So I thought I'd go down and see the Queen Mary 2. As it seems, did the rest of Sydney. Couldn't get down Oxford St. Then found out they'd closed Art Gallery Road. Went back round to Crown St and down, but then couldn't get across William St. Ended up going round more blocks and stopping in the first park I found on William St and just walked down.

So yes, it was big. They say the biggest ship to ever visit Australia. But I'm sure the Constellation was bigger (or longer rather). I'll have to go check the stats. I think the Independance is even bigger than the Constellation but I didn't get any good pics. But I digress. EDIT: According to the SMH the largest ship ever to have been here before was the "Iron Pacific" - which I've been on!!!

Fought my way through thousands of people. Took some piccies of a big boat. Watched the news being broadcast live. Took pics of reporters I don't actually know the names of. Waited impatiently for the QE 2 to arrive, as I was in a parking spot half an hours walk away that was rapidly running out of time. Got a glimpse of the QE2 coming down the harbour, then attempted to race back down Mrs Macquaries Road. Against thousands of people walking up the road. Argh! Managed to be far enough back to the car when the QE2 came by, and managed to get a photo of the two ships together! Sweet! And got a cool movie of them singing to each other. And then nearly died trying to get back up to the car before my time ran out.

So here's some pics.. :)

First up, the lovely Queen Mary 2. Gotta love a wide angle lens!
queenmary2-1.jpg

Some channel 7 reporter I think EDIT: Samantha Armytage I think
whatshername.jpg

And another channel 7 reporter
whatshisname2.jpg

A channel 9 reporter I think EDIT: Damien Ryan, Channel 9
whatshisname.jpg

The whole spectacle
newsspectacle.jpg

Queen Mary 2 through the trees
queenmary2-2.jpg

Life boat trials
lifeboattrials.jpg

Big red funnel
bigfunnel.jpg

Bridge closer up
queenmarybridge.jpg

I bet you guys weren't expecting to be on the internet in your bath robes hey? hehe
unexpected.jpg

These things were buzzing up and down the harbour all evening
militaryhelicopter.jpg

Cameraman hanging out the door of this helicopter
dudehangingout.jpg

Crowds gathered on the back of the Queen Mary 2 to see the Queen Elizabeth 2 come in
crowdsgathered.jpg

QE2 down the harbour
qe2-1.jpg

QE2 a bit closer, behind cloud unfortunately
qe2-2.jpg

QE2 nearing Circular Quay
qe2-3.jpg

Queen Elizabeth 2 and Queen Mary 2 in Sydney Harbour
queens.jpg

Time!!

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Time is going too fast. Every month I run a bunch of routine security stuff over my servers. It takes the better part of a day to do it all. But it seriously feels like I only did the last round of checks a week or so ago, and it's flipping time to do them all over again!! Since when has time been going so fast??

And when did people become so disrespectful? ok that's a stupid question, people have *always* been that disrespectful. Like the yobbo neighbours who have no respect for rules, the peace of other people, or the water crisis, by bombing into the pool and wasted bucketloads of water. Or the ones that open the door less than 30 seconds after I've closed it so their four year old son can get back into the building. Well lady, if your son is not big enough to press the buzzer to get back in, then maybe he's not big enough to be playing outside BY HIMSELF?!?!?! I won't even start on the rubbish situation. I'm going to bed.

Set top box

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So Jake lent me a set-top box to try out here.

The good news is I can now get channel 2 and SBS quite clearly on it (on analogue it's completely crap, sometimes so bad you can't get it at all). Except for some ads which freak it out completely.

The bad news is 7 and 9 are also a little freaked out and jerk the screen up, kinda like a vertical hold problem.

So it kinda works and would be kinda useful. But don't know if would be worth going out and buying one. Unless Jake wants to do me a very good price heh. Then there's also the question of how I'd fit it into my current setup without adding *another* device to my aerial loop and potentially losing quality overall...

Kreme

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It wasn't my fault! It was on the way!
;)

...

Trekked out to the other side of the world, aka half way to Canberra, aka Mt Annan today to try on a wedding dress. It was very long but I suppose that could be fixed. The more i look at the photos the more I like it. Tempted to buy it, but think it might be wise to try on a few more dresses first.. I suppose.. but it's really nice.. I'd post a pic but I want to surprise Stu on our wedding day, if it happens that this is the one .. heh

But since we were so close to Krispy Kreme at Campbelltown, we couldn't resist the call of the donuts.... and treated George to drive-thru which spun her out completely :)

Poo poo poker

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Did my usual trick of coming one off the place-getters tonight. Fifth. Starting with 11, but 4 frustrating buy-backs, taking it up to 15 essentially. As per usual I played badly, or really not at all, and bled myself dry. Still, it was decent fun.

This, on top of a completely suckfull day where everything I touched didn't work, and I just want to crawl into bed.

Where were you?

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From Karla


  • Where were you when Armstrong first walked on the Moon?

    Half of my DNA was wherever my mother was, but that I don't know.

  • Where were you when you heard Princess Di had died?

    I was at home at the parent's place. I was by myself. My brother called the house. I also remember talking about it when I went to church at St Matthias that night.

  • Where were you on New Year�s Eve of 1999/2000?

    NY2K at Homebush. We only just managed to get in the gate before midnight though. We were on the dancefloor and someone came around giving sparklers to people to use. Midnight came and I thought "well we still have power. cool. can party all night" hehe. The only people at CIA that could have done anything about the servers doing anything silly were all at parties all night. Vic and Janelle and I got home at 6am or something, saw that everything was working ok, and didn't think much more of it. hehe.

  • Where were you on Sept.11, 2001?

    I was at CIA. Gamera was being stoopid and fussing over one of its disks. While I was working on it, Marc was online and called me over to tell me. We found pics on the BBC website, and when I saw both towers on fire I know it was deliberate. But the pictures were so small I didn't think too much of it. Came home and turned the telly on and stayed up til 3am watching it all.

  • Where were you when you first heard about the big 2004 Tsunami?

    Can't really remember. The initial reports listed only a few hundred people dead, which didn't really stick in my head. I remember being at J&G's though talking to Ralph about it and watching the news there when the count was more like 15000.

  • Where were you when you first heard that Madonna would go on tour last year?

    er.. did she announce that did she? shrug :)

Had dinner at the Tradies tonight for the various annivesary celebrations. Afterwards me little brother came over and we did a Bunnings run to pick up some supplies, then he came and replaced some washers and reseated a couple of taps. Taps that have been grinding since I bought the place six years ago!! Turns out I'm really going to need to replace all my taps completely as there's just so much gunk and crap on the old ones.

Pulling apart the hot water tap in the shower was fun. This is a tap I always had to use my whole body weight to turn off so it wouldn't drip. The washer was completely disintegrated! heh. And it doesn't grind anymore!! woot!!

Anyway, so the process tonight was more an assessment than anything. Will have to get meself six pairs of taps and then bribe me little brother to come back and install em. How's some cash and a roast dinner..? hehe

Nice weekend

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Didn't want to get up today. Except that I woke up at 4:45 and couldn't get back to sleep, so gave up, got up and went to work.

Had a nice weekend with the boy. On Friday night made Stu watch Amelie, which he enjoyed, which I knew he would heh.

Kribbie babies

Did a little food shopping on Saturday morning, then went down to Scotty's to give him Stu's ADSL router. My theory being that as soon as Stu didn't have a router, they'd activate his adsl. Scotty has adsl2 now, and got 1.7mbit download speeds - sweeeet! Had scrumptious lunch there, then went and visited Scotty's new block of land.

The Block

Then a trip to Magnet Mart, where we could see the storm closing in

Stormfront

Relaxed in the afternoon. Cooked a mini beef roast for dinner which was yummy.

After dinner we went out to a visit the partner of a colleague of Stu's, who has his own observatory in his backyard (he also has a *waycool* model collection). Because of all the rain and storms earlier in the evening, noone else turned up. In fact it was still raining when we arrived. So we didn't expect much. But at about 9:30 the clouds began to part and they fired up the telescope.

Telescope

It was *totally awesome*. It's a 14" reflector, mounted in a shed with a powered roof. We looked at the Orion nebula, lots of star clusters, the tarantula nebula, a double star, and finally Saturn, which was spectacular, very clear (even through a very fogged up telescope), and you could even see a few of its moons. And because noone else came, Stu and I had as much time as we liked to look at things. Around 11 the clouds closed in again so we went inside and watch an episode of Cosmos. Consequently got home quite late.

Slept in Sunday morning, and had some "home-made" cheese kranski for breakfast. Sunday afternoon was spent making models (I finished a small jet on Saturday, and worked on my Batwing on Sunday). Later in the afternoon we went for a little walk, and had a look at one of the houses I'd found on my property searches. On the way saw some lovely little red-rumped parrots (Psephotus haematonotus)..

Red-rumped parrots

Red-rumped parrots in flight

.. and a pair of crimson rosellas ..

Crimson rosella

Then headed out to Yass for dinner which was very pleasant. And so another weekend came to an end.

On the way out of town, noticed the tower was all lit up so snapped a dodgy pic of it out the window (really should have stopped but someone was behind me).

Golden Black Mountain Tower

The day at work was a bit of a waste. At least it was over fairly quickly.

Monkey Sea

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aka fish food .. er .. sea monkeys!

Jake's been growing these at work. I suggested they'd make great fish food :) I said they'd last about 2 seconds in with the fish. Well we sacrificed two of them. They lasted about 2 seconds. Actually that's probably overestimating it. I think one of them went in under a second to one of the guppies in the macquarium. Jake didn't have time to bend down to watch heh. I think the same guppy got the other one too. The betta was just far to slow heh

Sea Monkey

Tidying

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Tidying the flat somewhat crazily so I can take lots of pics of the state it's in now for Phothosynth. This so that things can be packed up and taken to Canberra. Now if only there was room at the other end for everything :/

Bullet Point Monday

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hey, Dave is doing it :) (go read that entry - the cartoon is hilarious, had me rotflmao :) )

  • spent most of Saturday throwing out my uni notes. Several trips to the recycling bin and it's *full* of my notes. Also some more school stuff. Culled eight very full boxes into two 3/4 filled boxes.

    Folder-go-round

  • some success at Freecycling things from the weekend. All my uni ring binders and stuff are promised, as well as a print that's been in the family for 30 years. And a student from my uni says she'll take a lot of my biochemistry/genetics text books, either for other students or the college library. Way cool!

  • upper with gmail is that it has a nifty api for mobile devices, which makes checking it on the blackberry awfully easy. My next phone is so going to have internet on it, even if it's not a blackberry.

  • downer with gmail is that you don't see your own posts to yahoo groups, because of it's "unique threading technology". Bah what a crock. So I never know if my posts have been approved to the groups until someone emails me.

  • Loverly dinner at Marylon's last night. Got a neato photo of fruitbats in flight on the way home

    fruitbat fruitbat

  • The handover of some of my roles at work is making me depressed. Specifically when P starts making messes of things and is reluctant to clean them up. All those years I worked to get things tidy is just going to go down the drain when I leave.. I can tell..

  • Went for an hour walk tonight, and yet still managed to get everything done that I wanted. Fairly happy about that. Although quite tired from being up in the middle of the night for an hour kicking the stoopid mail server :(

  • SAV in its wisdom decided that now, after twelve years of sitting on my computer, Trumpet Winsock containts "Hacktool.Nuker" and quarantined it. What a piece of crap software (SAV that is)!

  • Today's APOD is way cool, check it out

    There we go, I think that's enough catchup for one night :)

  • Wedding

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    Well I can categorically say when our wedding *won't* be. July 21.

    Other than that I have no idea. Truly.

    Ok, well I suppose I have *some* idea. No, scratch that, I don't really, I've just had a few thoughts, but no real ideas.

    Date
    Later this year. Dunno when. Depends on my job situation.

    Honeymoon
    Was hoping to get to Europe this year, perhaps as a "pre" honeymoon, and then just go away locally for a weekend or week after the wedding.

    Location
    Dunno. My church doesn't meet in a church building, which makes that difficult. I kinda like the idea of Yass at Annie's church, or that cute little church between Canberra and Murrumbateman. I kinda liked the idea of a late August wedding when all the cherry blossoms are out for some nice photos, but don't know Canberra well enough to know whereabouts to go.

    Bridesmaids and Groomsmen
    We'll probably pass on that. We want as low fuss as possible, and trying to organise other people for that sort of thing is so tweenies.

    Dress
    This is one thing I don't want to pass on. I really want a nice dress. Have started looking online for things I might like.

    Hair and makeup
    Something with cascading curls I think. Makeup I dunno. I'm crap at makeup. Might have to find some professional to do it for me.

    Flowers
    That's starting to get a bit hard. Maybe just something for me to hold.

    Reception
    Dunno. We kinda like the idea of something informal. Maybe a catered afternoon tea or something. Dunno where.

    Guests
    I'm thinking small. Like 50 *tops*. Was 42 at D&Y's and that seemed like an ok number. Stu wants small too.

    I suppose someone should give this to my mother to shut her up for a while... or maybe she'd just ask more questions ..

    Airwolf

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    Airwolf

    I watched some of one of my Christmas presents tonight - the pilot movie of the 80s TV show "Airwolf". And it was just as good as I remembered it! Which is really unusual for 80s shows. Usually they're very lame (Knight Rider as case in point). But this had very little 80s lameness. The pilot was beautifully filmed, with great music and a fantastic helicopter.

    I was in love with that helicopter when I used to watch it as a teenager. And had a bit of a crush on Stringfellow.. the strong silent type heh .. and Santini (Ernest Borgnine) was really cute too, especially how he used to call Airwolf affectionate names like "the lady" hehe.

    I bought a model of it way back then, but I was a lot younger then, and stuffed the thing up. So a year or so ago I bought another one on ebay, which I haven't built yet, but will soon. Here's my original one..

    Airwolf model

    Kazza's "Boring Life Of a Geek" aka BLOG

    IT geek, originally from Sydney, moved to Canberra in 2007. Married to "the sweetie", aka Stu. Prolific photographer, Lego junkie and tropical fish keeper.

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